Tuesday 4 October 2016
I was ready to paddle this morning. Until I got that gut feeling when I looked at the forecast and made a decision pre-6am that it was a “no go”. I was not paddling after all! This sounds far too easy a decision, but it never is and never will be. To pass up the chance of being further north and have another 50 to 60kms notched up was all I wanted. But there was a conflicting question in my head. The swell, mixed with the ocean chop, together with that storm coming in from the north. After spending this long on this adventure, I have at last promised myself to listen to my gut instinct. I listened and then pulled off my gear and told Anna to go back to sleep. But no way was there any sleep for me! I lay and listened to the ocean, the waves, the wind, some early morning birds and then the beginnings of a breeze.
As soon as it was light, I pulled back a curtain and sat looking out onto the sea! There I sat for the next few hours, just looking and trying to be rational. I have and will always have a tough time on these most marginal of days. If it had only been a paddle of an hour or so, it wouldn’t have been a problem. But for a 7-10 hour day on the water, it has to be a winner of a day. Bugger being on the water on a marginal day on the West Coast! I will wait and in any case, I’ve a number of other great things to do today. Firstly, to catch up on my e-mails and then to organise some meetings with a few people in the sunshine by the New Plymouth Museum. But it takes me a while to try to be happy about today. Eventually the mood lightens and my head clears. I collect a parcel from the courier company and then head around the city to just get stuff done.
At last we locate a car park and sit in the sun away from the now fresh, cool wind and were joined by Sharyn to chat more about my journey. It will be great to see the article she has written in the not too distant future. Also caught up with Michael Peach for a quick photo. Another bit of news is that Gull NZ has welcomed me to their sports people's page (http://www.gullsports.co.nz/sponsored-athletes/lynn-paterson-ocean-kayaking/). I’m humbled by their generosity and their support for this leg of my journey.
Now the clouds are rolling in and the wind and waves are on the rise. Anna is excited at the thought of seeing the 6 meter plus waves that are predicted for later this week. But, while waiting for this to happen, we are off to help Anna discover how cute and cuddly the baby lambs are. As for me, I have some more location and landing checks to carry out. Cuzzie and the girls are on a road trip. No ocean kayaking stories for the next wee while, apart from a lake or two if we happen to find any, or perhaps a large lagoon!
My smiles today:
Anna and her pervading calmness.
My crazy brain.
A brave and tough stand-down decision.
Free wi-fi locations.
My thoughts today:
Choose your words carefully! If the words you spoke appeared on your skin, would you still be beautiful?
Until tomorrow. Goodnight from Red and Anna.
Ma Te Wa.
PLEASE TXT REDZ TO 2446 TO DONATE $3 TO MHFNZ.